Purpose– The purpose of this paper is to examine the assertion that, because library-managed institutional repositories (IRs) have successfully created specific collections of self-archived textual papers produced by researchers in Higher Education organisations, the entire digital content of a university’s network space can be managed by libraries as successfully as the contents of an IR. The system for achieving this is called a “digital asset management” system (DAMs).
Design/methodology/approach– The approach takes the form of a review of some recent writing on this topic combined with observations from library and information management practice.
Findings– The paper finds that “DAMs” systems are in reality very under-developed. Libraries cannot implement ready-made “DAMs” for universities in the same way that they can implement a library management system. However, they are well placed to use their institutional repository and general information management expertise to improve the DAMs practices of universities and should gradually start to promote better practice in this area.
Research limitations/implications– Further investigation into the concept of DAMs is necessary to see how software innovations can push the idea forward.
Practical implications– Given that DAMs are underdeveloped relative to their potential, practitioners should adopt a gradualist and incremental approach to the implementation of DAMs ideas.
Originality/value– The paper tries to present the concepts of DAMs against a background of everyday library and information practice.
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